Langres Is The Creamy French Cheese Made For Champagne

When someone opines that Langres cheese is made for champagne, you likely imagine pairing the acclaimed cheese with the famous bubbly wine. It's certainly possible to do that, but it's way more fun to experience the two as intended — merged together. Landres cheese is formed with a concave top, in the shape of a slight dip, to accommodate its home-region soul mate, French champagne

Instead of immediately slicing off chunks of the dreamy, creamy, soft cheese, you can do as in-the-know turophiles (aka cheese lovers) do: carve a small X shape into the washed rind of the divot-shaped top. That's where the champagne goes. The slits don't have to be deep, just enough to get through the rind without breaking apart the tender cheese. Then pop the cork on your favorite champagne, and drizzle a few ounces over the newly created X. As champagne naturally does, it will bubble into a frothy display before seeping into the gently textured center cheese beneath the rind. 

The champagne bubbles make the Langres even creamier while also enhancing the brioche-leaning taste. To many palettes, cheeses like Langres tend to be rich with a tinge of saltiness, which the champagne potentially balances out. Simply sipping a glass of champagne while nibbling the cheese is another way to enjoy the pairing, but infusing it with the compatible regional bubbly marries the flavors in an intensely encompassing way. 

The Langes region and designation of origin

Like many artisan or specialty cheeses, Langres cheese had humble beginnings in the farmlands of the town and plateau for which it's named. The original cheese was made by farming families using terra cotta containers and fresh warm milk from their cows. As the story goes, they dried the cheese on leaves from lime trees and spread it out to mature on straw. Some accounts trace its origin, or at least a version of it, even further back to Merovingian dynasties in power as early as 700 AD. 

They've come a long way since then, literally and figuratively. As part of the official Champagne region, Langres cheese has received France's exclusive Certified Destination of Origin as well as the Protected Designation of Origin designation and multiple awards within the country and abroad. In other words, Langres is far from a gimmicky cheese for a flamboyant presentation. It's highly regarded within the industry and is carefully created with a series of immersive washings resulting in light vanilla-orange coloration and an intense pungent taste and aroma. 

Pairing Langres cheese with champagne, either by a sip-and-slice approach or through full bubbly immersion, is a natural regional liaison. After all, the same terroir in the Champagne region sustains and informs them both. And as the saying goes, "What grows together goes together."